SB 5897 requires the state to use the crime victim’s compensation fund to pay for the medical examination of children who may be the victim of felony-level physical abuse; currently only child sexual abuse exams are eligible for reimbursement. Although this impacts a small percentage of children, the intent is that if the state bears the cost of the exam, this will be an incentive for timely evaluations, lead to early identification of abuse, and potentially prevent a child from further trauma or injury. No institution can directly or indirectly bill the examination to the suspected victim.
Ways and Means Amendment: As amended, the bill is subject to the availability of funds appropriated; and the Crime Victims Compensation Fund, secondary to any other insurance, would be available for reimbursement of costs related to the examination of a suspected victim of assault of a child when the exam is conducted within 75 days of the filing of a petition for dependency by the Department of Social and Health Services. Additionally, the act would expire June 30, 2019.